Can You Sue a Distracted or Reckless Driver?
Accidents due to distracted driving are on the rise in the US due in large part to increased smartphone use while driving. According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), more than 3,000 people are killed annually in distracted driving collisions. On top of this number, thousands more are injured, with some even suffering permanent disability.
Distracted driving, which involves anything that takes your mind, hands, or eyes off of driving, can occur in a number of ways. The most common examples of distracted driving are texting or talking on a smartphone while operating a motor vehicle. Playing with the radio, searching for a music mix or using a GPS system are also easy ways a driver can become distracted.
Distracted Driving Laws in the 4 States Area
Most states have taken laws to reduce the incidence of distracted driving. In Missouri, it is illegal for those under the age of 21 to text while driving. Arkansas prohibits the use of hand-held devices for drivers 18 through 20 and in work or school zones. Cell phones are prohibited by school bus drivers and those under 18.
Kansas and Oklahoma prohibit all drivers from texting and driving, as well as prohibits drivers with permits from using handheld devices at all. Other drivers are permitted to make calls behind the wheel. While investigating how an accident occurred, a personal injury attorney from our firm will investigate to determine whether the other party was using a smartphone during the accident.
Standard of Reasonable Care While Driving
Even without these criminal laws, a driver in any of these states is required to drive reasonably safe under the circumstances. This standard of care includes keeping a proper lookout. Often it is impossible to drive in a reasonable manner or keep a proper lookout while texting, talking, or eating/drinking while driving. If you are injured due to a distracted driver, a personal injury attorney from our firm may focus on this standard.
The Situation of “No-Contact Accidents”
Though most collisions occur when the distracted driver has physical contact with your vehicle, this is not always the case. In some cases, the distracted driver may veer out of his or her lane, causing the innocent driver to avoid a collision, often striking another vehicle or object. Failing to make contact with another vehicle does not absolve the distracted driver if his or her actions caused the other driver to swerve or brake suddenly.
Damages in a Personal Injury Case
Many think that medical expenses and lost wages are the only damages compensable in a car accident lawsuit. The law also provides for additional damages, including pain, suffering, mental anguish, loss of society with a loved one and damages for permanent disfigurement. The car accident attorneys from our firm will carefully go through your history before and after the accident to pursue compensation for as many forms of damages as possible on your behalf.
Contact Johnson, Vorhees & Martucci
We at Johnson, Vorhees & Martucci have more than 140 collective years of experience in personal injury cases. We have collected millions in damages on behalf of our clients. Each personal injury attorney at our firm is qualified and experienced in car accident cases, including those involving distracted driving. When handling a personal injury suit, experience and a track record of success matter. Let us put our own experience to work for you.
Contact our firm at (833) 600-0125 for a free consultation to discuss your case.